A shout out for a good night out in Clinton
The City of Clinton just completed our 3rd annual National Night Out (NNO) event at Lydia Mill Children’s Park last evening. What is that and what’s the big deal you might be asking!
Well, quoting from the National Night Out website, “National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live. National Night Out enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community. Furthermore, it provides a great opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances. Millions of neighbors take part in National Night Out across thousands of communities from all fifty states, U.S. territories, Canadian cities, and military bases worldwide on the first Tuesday in August (Texas celebrates on the first Tuesday in October). Neighborhoods host block parties, festivals, parades, cookouts and various other community events with safety demonstrations, seminars, youth events, visits from emergency personnel, exhibits and much, much more.”
Nationally, NNO has been going on since 1984; however, the City of Clinton didn’t begin celebrating until 2015 under the suggestion and leadership of Department of Public Safety Director Robin Morse. Each year the celebration has added more and more components and truly is a community effort. I’d like to take this opportunity to give a shout out to those that have played a role in making this a great community event.
Of course, I start off with our city personnel. While NNO is a law enforcement event, it is truly a team effort. There’s lots of behind the scenes activities that happen prior to the hot dogs, games, bounce houses, and community organization tents going up.
Our street, sanitation, and parks personnel did an awesome job of adding mulch to the playground, cutting the park and field, treating for fire ants so no one gets bit, trimming up bushes, sweeping the sidewalks, cleaning up trash, and weed eating.
Electric personnel worked to extend the park’s power supply to ensure reliable power was available for inflatables and community organizations that needed power.
Water division personnel ensured water was available for the mist tent and that storm drainage was clean.
Administrative personnel worked to coordinate the efforts of the community involvement and participation and worked to market the night out to the community.
This year, we developed an Energy Conservation team utilizing personnel across several departments to develop educational and promotional materials and displays to help our citizens understand how they can save money and energy with simple changes in their homes.
And of course public safety – planned, prepared, and served hot dogs, played games with citizens, answered questions, provided educational and safety materials to those in attendance.
As if all that doesn’t paint an exciting picture of teamwork and community, I haven’t even touched on those in the community that helped make NNO a success!
The United Way, Crime Stoppers, the LCSO, Thornwell, Laurens County Chamber of Commerce, SC Empowerment Centre, Beyond Abuse, and several area churches and community citizens all helped out by providing information, giveaways, educational materials, assistance, and activities for NNO attendees.
Laurens County School District 56 was even a part as they provided assistance from the athletic department to prepare the kick ball field. Speaking of kick ball, Douglas Shenton from First Baptist Church deserves a huge thank you in that he contacted our special projects coordinator and asked specifically if he could get a group from FBC to assist with kick ball games – and even offered to bring the kick ball and bases.
Let me just take this moment to tell you what an honor to serve as Clinton’s Interim City Manager in a community that works so well together and comes together to serve and interact with our citizens.
It was a great night in the City of Clinton and I appreciate everyone that was a part of this community event.
(Dale Satterfield is the City of Clinton’s interim city manager.)